Friday, November 7, 2008

Joe Williams & Eddie "Cleanhead" Vinson - Hold It Right There

Available on EMusic, Amazon, and iTunes.

This is an ear-catching tune pairing Joe Williams and saxophonist Eddie Vinson. I found it years ago at a local library, grabbed it because I like Joe Williams, and got hooked on it immediately. The whole album is really good. I think Joe Williams has one of the outstanding voices in all of jazz history--he sounds polished, dignified, and elegant--especially compared to his predecessor in the Basie band, Jimmie Rushing--but his voice is also time-worn and sometimes blue. Vinson, on the other hand, has a very rough voice, very bluesy, like his saxophone style.

The track is energetic in a groovy way. I don't play a lot of stuff from this style of jazz--my book is kind of short on it, and I'm less attuned to it than to other eras--but I enjoy this particular track and it has gotten a good response when I play it in a set. I know I should stock up my arsenal in this style, just so that I can be versatile. Anyone have a suggestion for similar tracks to check out?

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